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  Pres. Trump Meets with Airline CE Os on Coronavirus  CSPAN  March 4, 2020 2:46pm-3:15pm EST

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president trump: we are talking about the effects of the virus on the air travel and what they see. in a certain way you could say
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that the borders are automatically shut down without having to say shut down. to a certain extent they are automatically shut down, but it's affecting the airline business as it would, and a lot of people are staying in our country and they are shopping and using our hotels in this country. from that standpoint i think probably there is a positive impact. but there is also an impact on overseas travel which will be fairly substantial. mike, maybe i'll let you give a briefing what we just discussed. vice president pence: thank you, mr. president, grateful to have the opportunity to meet with the leaders of the airline industry today. mr. president, you said from early on we were going to have a whole of government approach. but the truth is as evidenced by all these great industry leaders, it's really a whole of america approach. the american people deserve to know that according to all of our experts, the risk to the
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average american of contracting the virus remains low. that's largely owing to your decision, mr. president, to suspend all travel from china into the united states and quarantine all americans that are returning. it's also owing to the tremendous cooperation of this industry, the airline industry. because in addition to suspending travel from china, you recently made the decision to designate as do not travel certain areas of italy, certain areas of south korea, but we also at your direction worked with this industry so that now as of yesterday morning all passengers on all direct flights from all airports in italy or south korea are being screened on multiple times before they board any of these airlines. we are grateful for that, mr. president. i know you are. everyone here should know that we are going to continue to follow the facts and the data. dr. burks has worked closely
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with all of our health officials to determine what additional screening might be required in the united states. or in partners around the world, but our airlines are going to play a key role, mr. president, in preventing the spread of this disease and even earlier today at your direction we met with leaders of our nursing home industry. talk about the measures of increased measures to prevent the spread of infectious disease. we sent new guidance out to nursing homes. we'll announce later today new priority of inspections for infectious diseases. detailing that. we explained it to the industry today. also on the issue of testing, mr. president, you have made that a priority. we'll have over a million tests in the field today. i spoke to several governor this is morning that were grateful for the fact that the changes you made this weekend through the f.d.a. now make it possible for state health clinics as well as universities around the country to be able
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to conduct coronavirus tests, but we'll also be meeting this afternoon with leaders about our commercial laboratories to make a coronavirus test more rapidly, more widely available to doctors' offices, medical clinics, and consumers around the country. mr. president, as you said it is a whole of government approach, but in a very real sense a whole of america approach and i have already expressed and i know you feel a great deal of gratitude to our partners in the industry and in the airline industry for acting on your priority to put the safety and health of the american people first. president trump: thank you very much. i just want to add and to go a little bit further, the obama administration made a decision on testing that turned out to be very detrimental to what we are doing. and we undid that decision a few days ago so that the testing can take place in a
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much more accurate and rapid fashion. that was a decision we disagreed with. i don't think we would have made it, but for some reason it was made. but we have undone that decision. also when people come in from certain areas where doing checks not only at the site of takeoff but the site of landing, so when they land in our country, we'll also do it, if planes are leaving from certain zest dest continuations. i might -- destinations. i would like you to say a few words. you have been doing a fantastic job in a short time. you have been doing a fantastic job. please. >> mr. president, we talked about which americans are most vulnerable. and the fact that younger americans may not be as vulnerable. we are really focused very much in that way and i think the airline industry can help us in becoming screening required particularly to protect our older americans.
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president trump: thank you. do you have anything to say? >> thank you for having us. thanks for your work we are doing jointly. we are proud of our team and the work they are doing. we appreciate the aggressive containment efforts that the united states has done to protect americans. and the role we played in that. we are happy to be here. continue to -- particularly as we move from maybe aggressive containment to mitigation what can be done there as well. president trump: maybe we'll go around the room if you'd like to say something, please. >> thank you, mr. president. we appreciate the leadership and collaboration and coordination and certainly the industry wants to do everything that we can to keep americans safe and certainly our employees and our customers. we stepped up our efforts to
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make sure your planes are clean and disinfected. and we worked very closely with the c.d.c. and the c.d.c. and i think that's gone very, very well. we have the proper protocols in place whenever there is a suspected illness. i think all that's working very well. i think everybody's doing a great job and all we can. president trump: we appreciate that. thank you very much. >> we appreciate the efforts, mr. president. i think like all of the folks around the table the focus of the leadership teams is the safety of our employees and customers. i think all of us have made a lot of changes to our cleaning procedures, changes to our onboard procedures, gloves,ance tation, the service our flight attendants are providing and trying to do what we can to help everyone contain the virus and contain the spread of it.
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we appreciate t more than we can do to help, we are here to till we want to do that. president trump: are you using different things for the cleaning? the fluids, are you using -- >> we have taken a good look at them. the stuff we are using i think we concluded is physical k effective. we are changing the routines. there are three levels of cleaning we do and we are intensifying the cleaning of the aircraft. >> peter ingram, hawaiian airlines. i echo my counterparts in the industry talking about the it employees is paramount to everything we do. and appreciate the collaboration with the administration and the government to make sure that we are doing everything we can to ensure that. i think it is very helpful to hear dr. burks talk about the specific areas of risk because there is a lot of concern out
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there. there's concern internationally and domestically. and i think the more information that we have to share with our guests about the facts it's very helpful as we go forward with this challenge. president trump: thank you very much. >> mr. president, thank you for this opportunity for us to come together as leaders in the aviation industry. and to have a sharing of information which i think is critical. we all represent the men and women caught on the frontlines and ensure they have the tools, resource, and information to do their job each and every day so these efforts are effective. the one thing the aviation industry has proven it does well it comes together in times of challenge to provide a solution for this country. i feel very confident that with your leadership and all the folks in the room that we will continue to serve first and foremost our employees so they can serve their customers. president trump: did you have
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anything to say? >> i would just say, mr. president, your leadership for funneling to 11 specific airports and contract medical staff we put in place have screened over 53,000 individuals and prevented a number folks from coming into the country. that's largely due to the cooperation, flexibility of the individuals in this room. again, thank you for everything that you are doing to help us keep america safe. president trump: anything different on the southern border where we are doing so well? we are setting records on the southern border in terms of allowing the people that are supposed to be here in but not allowing others in. anything new on the southern border? >> from the screening standpoint. we have some of the same screening efforts. contract medical staff, some from h.h.s. and some contract are screening individuals. referring to c.d.c. as necessary. some of the same procedures at airports taking place at land ports of entry, as well as maritime ports of entries. for d.h.s. we are looking at every day individuals come into the country, not just through the airports. making sure we are securing the
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country as a whole. president trump: good job. thank you. >> mr. president, thank you for having us. we were delighted when you made vice president the head of the task force. we believe in collaboration. we want to try to solve these problems both short and long term. we have been sharing ideas with the vice president's staff and your staff. we think there are better ways to trace the passengers coming in. we have contracted to having a mobile app and website developed that everyone would have to fill out that would go directly to c.d.c. with that information. we are moving forward with that. there's been good progress. i think what we all need is the reassurance that you and the vice president and others have been providing that travel is safe and that we can go forward. right now the fear is almost worse than the virus. president trump: doing a good job. these professionals are amazing. they have stepped up. like the airlines have stepped up. very much so. thank you. >> jetblue, thank you very much for having us. a lot has been said, we are
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doing -- taking many of the same measures as everyone else to keep our customers and our crew members safe and secure. thank you for putting the vice president in charge of these efforts. the federal government has tremendous flexibility when it comes together for a common goal. i would like to give a quick shout out to the people in the federal government and the people that work with us who are really in the frontlines of this and the heroic efforts they are making every day to keep us safe and secure. president trump: thank you very much. >> i take a different angle. a lot has been said. the safety and hept of our customers and employees are at the top. i think as i look through this from a personal i'm a heart transplant survivor. if you think of the poster child for the individual that could be affected by this, i am it. i have immune system concerns. that's the task we take at
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united about keeping our airlines safe. we are exploring the different ideas and ask what we can do to ensure our planes are safe as possible. anything that projects ability, calm, and dr. burks with regards to behavior. we even invented the corona bump at united t may sound silly but a fund way we need to know, be careful the next few weeks that we adapt our behavior so we can continue to stay safe. president trump: you are a heart transplant survivor. i was reading about that. one of the big executives, great executives of our country, of the world. and you are a heart transplant. ou look very good to me. >> i don't recommend it. president trump: that's great. thank you very much. mike, finish it up. >> thank you, mr. president. vice president pence: the american people deserve to know
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that the threat of contracting-coronavirus remains low according to our experts. but at your direction we are going to continue to bring the full resources of the federal government and we are going to enlist the full resources of american industry to keep the american people safe. our airlines have been exceptional partners with us, not only the executives, but we want to commend the crews in taking care of passengers and people cleaning the planes and keeping it all safe and working with us on the screening process and funneling process. we are going to continue to lean into this effort and we will continue to do so until we find our way through, the impacts of the coronavirus and when we accomplish that, we'll accomplish it as one american people, as one team.
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and i'm grateful to have the people on the team here in the room. president trump: as certain areas can be more of a problem, we may close them up as we have done in numerous areas. we have very much in hand and we will close some areas, not whole country but in certain areas like italy. we are doing a very effective job. that is very important. do you know what the percentage. people have this at a light level and won't go to a doctor or hospital. there are many people like that. young people, you can't say immune to it, but the numbers are very small. and it does affect the older people like the nursing home situation that we have on the west coast, single nursing home, where we have pretty big
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percentage of people. as things go along, so we are trying to adjust the number and see what the number might be. if you add many, many people that have it and don't know they have it and they have a cold, i think that number will be a lot different number than the twos or one and a halfs that we are hearing. i'm proud of the people in the administration. i'm proud of the people in the airline business. the airline business seems to pull together and this is a great case. great executives and you love the country and love what you do and thank you all very much. we appreciate it. >> any financial support from the airlines to deal with the losses? president trump: don't ask that question because i don't want to give them any ideas. we haven't discussed that yet.
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>> thank you guys. >> is your message to americans it is safe to fly? president trump: it is safe to fly. we don't want to say anything other than that and we have closed down certain sections of the world and they have automatically closed them also. they understand it better perhaps than anybody. yes, it's safe. >> are american businesses overreacting cutting down domestic travel. president trump: a lot of people are doing domestic business. they feel safe. if you look at the percentage, we have a very small percentage and big percentage is when we have 40 or so people from the ship. we brought them and immediately quarantined but adding that to the numbers we had which is very small. as people get better, most of
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these people are getting better. so are released, some are going home, some will get 100% report. we will take them off the list. we have a small number of people, we have a big country. the biggest impact when we took the 40-plus people. they are americans. they were literally stranded and it was very unfair and brought them back and immediately quarantined them. if you don't add that to the numbers, we are talking about small numbers in the united states. we have done a good job, all of us. the media has really treated us very fairly, which i appreciate. i think it is very important. >> is there anything they should be doing differently if it is safe to fly. >> united airlines. american airlines. >> if you are a passenger, we
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have been told wash your hands. >> dr. brooks. >> we are always saying the common sense of washing your hands and not touching your face and if you touched anything, go and wash your hands again, 20 seconds with soap and hand sanitizer, but i was reassured to hear about the three levels of cleaning procedures because that will be assuring. president trump: and i haven't touched my face in weeks. i miss it. >> would you address some of the concerns that travelers that booked their flights and might be coming on a trip and might make rearrangements. president trump: what would you say about that? >> we put out a flexibility to book their travel in advance and if they want to change that later, change either way, we are
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figuring out ways to make sure here is flexibility. >> we have to understand of most people's travel ban and make sure customers get the best treatment. president trump: people will be very impressed. >> you mentioned the obama-era rule regarding this. president trump: we can talk about that. >> last administration has asserted f.d.a. jurisdiction over development of tests and involved the president and changesed on friday. as i spoke to several governors this morning, states have the ability to conduct the coronavirus test in state labs, university laboratories and
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that's because the change the president authorized. on the changing jurisdiction of that. freed up more available testing. >> thank you, mr. vice president. >> in the past we used to be able to have labts and then be able to apply them for critical purposes. in the previous administration, that became regulated. now for someone to do that, they had to formally file with the f.d.a. and what the president did was allow that regulatory relief now and those university labs and other labs in this country can be developing diagnose no, sir particulars and men and women in this nation and the doctors can get to the patients they are caring for. what has changed the
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availability of testing overnight. >> it was a very big move and something we had to do and did it very quickly and we have tremendous flexibility in many more sites and people. and you couldn't have done it under the obama rule and ended it quickly. >> what are you hoping to get from these folks and what information do they need to track or share with the federal government? >> we are asking for additional pieces of information so the c.d.c. and h.h.s. and others can track individuals into the country and continue on to their time destination and from a health perspective we need to reach out and get in touch with them looking for a few more pieces of information and data from them. [indiscernible] >> we will continue to have conversations. >> can i follow up on that conversation, north carolina conversation who was at the
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nursing home in washington state, do you have the contact information who was with that person on the flight to north carolina? mr. pence: public health evaluation is ongoing and working with the airlines and north carolina health department, c.d.c. supports the local public health department to get that information. >> at this point, you don't have the passenger information, people who were on that flight? >> we have the manifest and the trick is to find them. >> much of that has already been done already. >> thanks, guys. thanks, guys. president trump: no question on the elections? [laughter] >> thanks, guys. let's go. let's go. et's go!
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president trump: incredible comeback for joe biden. if elizabeth warren should have done from their point of view, he would have won. he would have won a lot of states including massachusetts, texas, definitely minnesota. so bernie would have won states that lost easily. but the particular message, i would say minnesota in particular and would say texas and some others. she was really a spoiler, because other people got out and those votes went to joe. and those people really helped joe by getting out early. in the case of elizabeth warren, had she gotten out, it would have been a very different situation.
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it would have been a different night. just that one simple move. had she left, pick up massachusetts, minnesota and probably texas and those are the three. i would imagine others he would have picked up. he liz beth warren was the single biggest factor in that election last night and would have been a different thing and not in a positive way for her, but selfish way for her, she was selfish from that point of view. do i care? no. because we are finding out who we are running against. if she would have gotten out and endorsed, even if she didn't endorse, i think there is a lot of bad blood there, if she hadn't endorsed, he would have been a lot better off. i think it's tough. joe has an easier path right now, believe it or not.
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i see mini mike just got out and going to save face by putting money into biden's campaign and see what happens. i don't think that will have an impact. one thing this whole thing has shown, you can't buy an election. steyer put in $300 million and he is home probably licking his wounds and bloomberg put in probably a billion dollars and sometimes you just don't have what it takes. i said to him, it's not easy doing what i did, is it? it's one of those things, but will be very interesting. to think this would have changed so much, because if you go before saturday, before south carolina, i mean, he had -- joe had absolutely no chance, according to you people. but they used to say about me,
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too. not very much. i always felt i had a good chance. i watched and it happened and it happened pretty easily. i think joe would have the advantage now. if you look at the states with florida and others, i think he has an advantage in those states. but again, had elizabeth warren endorsed bernie, you are talking about a whole different subject. that is whole another question. he would have gotten most of those votes. you are talking about a much different -- >> the stock market's reaction, there has been a sigh of releff. president trump: it is partially this and also the fact that they didn't like seeing what they are seeing. they don't like joe either. a lot of people are with joe and look at those people, they are worse than bernie in terms of being radical left. and some of joe's handlers and that's what they are, handlers.
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and i want to be nice. that is pretty scary. it's going to be that way. >> do you think bloomberg money will be more powerful? president trump: he won nothing. he got so few delegates, it's in credible. he is spiteful and a spiteful guy and i know him well. i know him very well. he made a fool out of himself and he is not too happy. the first thing he should do is fire his political opponents. i know them. i could have told him very easily. you can put $2 billion in and you can't win. thank you very much. >> come on. let's go!